11th Armoured Division (UK) at Gescher (end of March 1945)

Discussion in 'NW Europe' started by Monument, Jan 23, 2021.

  1. Monument

    Monument Member

    Hello, I am looking for information and documents about the units of the 11th Armoured Division (UK) and what happened at Gescher at the end of March 1945. On March 29, 1945, the Inns of Court Regiment advanced in Gescher. But returned to Velen. On March 30, 1945 the 2nd Fife and Forfar Yeomanry moved into Gescher with parts from the 8th Battalion, Rifle Brigade. In Gescher there are said to have been minor fights with German paratroopers. Then the division advanced towards Legden and Holtwick. There was also further fighting there. I would like to learn as much as possible about the exact events and routes. That's why I'm interested in the days from March 29th to March 31st, 1945. Thank you in advance.
     
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  2. VarsityGlider305

    VarsityGlider305 Active Member

    Me too! In particular what happened on the 30th (Good Friday) when my father and others were liberated and any reference to Haus Hall military hospital being overrun. I've seen references to "Guards Division" and "6th Armoured Recce" units being involved but have been unable to find any further details.

    Jenny
     
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  3. CL1

    CL1 116th LAA and 92nd (Loyals) LAA,Royal Artillery

    Might have more info in this thread below

    The division left Belgium on March 28th, crossed the Rhine at Wesel, and moved to a concentration area northeast of Wesel. From there, the 11th Armoured advanced to Gescher by the evening of the 30th. On the night of March 31st/April 1st, the 159th established a bridgehead over the Dortmund-Ems Canal facing the Germans positions on the high ground of Teutoburger Wald, a wooded range of hills to the east

    3rd Battalion Monmouthshire Regiment

    A number of threads here 11 armoured division | WW2Talk
     
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  4. ltdan

    ltdan Nietenzähler

    a few information snippets from the German side
    KTB Pz.Gren.Rgt. 115
    March 29: Weather overcast. 5 a.m. Kampfgruppe Dyroff arrives at the new operational area. 8 o'clock command post relocated from Groß-Burlo to Gut Eckelhoff 8km northwest of Borken. 9 o'clock strong enemy pressure from the direction of Borken to the north. 10.15 a.m. Enemy tanks close to the regimental command post. 10.45 a.m. Command post relocated to Holthausen Castle. 11 a.m. Base Tauer shoots down an enemy armored car 2km northwest of Borken. 12.15 p.m. Regimental commander at division command post. Army Flak Dept. 315 under the command of Captain Schwermann is placed under the regiment. 1.30 p.m. Dyroff reports 30 enemy tanks, including flame tanks, at station Gr. Burlo. 5.30 p.m. Regimental command post is relocated 3km northeast of Stadtlohn. 6 p.m. Operation of the combat group south of Stadtlohn on streets Stadtlohn-Südlohn, Stadtlohn-Gescher. 8 p.m. Regimental commander to the division. 8.30 p.m. enemy attack on the southern edge of Stadtlohn repulsed by Kampfgruppe Dyroff.

    KTB I. Bataillon/Pz.Gren.Rgt. 115
    March29: Weather overcast, rain. Midnight at Haus Wolbringk, refreshments are received and continue on foot to Vardingholt. Commander ahead to regimental command post, receives in Gr. Burlo the order: Defense to the south and and southeast in the area of Groß Burlo. 8 a.m. After the vehicles have been brought in, the battalion reaches the new operational area and is deployed as follows: 2nd company securing the road to the south, 4th and 5th company monitoring. At the station Groß Burlo, Kampfgruppe v. Huest with five subordinate tank destroyers from Panzer Jäger Abteilung 33. 6 pm Opponent takes position of Kampfgruppe v. Huest with armor and flame armor and break in. 8 p.m. Battalion threatened in the flank, settles down on a position 1 km north of Groß Burlo. The new position turns out to be already occupied by units of the parachute tank corps "Hermann Göring". The battalion therefore takes up position 1km south of Öding. 10 p.m. Order to expand an HVAC eastward to Ahaus. For the time being, the battalion takes position west of the customs house with the front facing east and waits for the vehicles to appear. Situation unresolved in Öding.
     
  5. Monument

    Monument Member

    The 6th Airborne Armored Reconnaissance Regiment and the 6th Guards (Tank) Brigade were subordinate to the 6th Airborne Division. The 11th Armored Division has captured Gescher. The Haus Hall military hospital must first have been captured by the 2nd Fife and Forfar Yeomanry and parts of the 8th Battalion, Rifle Brigade. The 6th Airborne Division has advanced further east and has captured Coesfeld. On the night of March 29th to March 30th, a German paratrooper battalion came to Gescher from Holland. The battalion was assigned to defend Gescher, but the soldiers did not know that the Haus Hall military hospital was here. Some soldiers took up positions behind the military hospital. The chief military doctor of the military hospital asked that the soldiers not defend Gescher so that the wounded would not be in danger. The soldiers then moved on.
     
  6. 8RB

    8RB Well-Known Member

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  7. VarsityGlider305

    VarsityGlider305 Active Member

    Thanks CL1. This is interesting since a local newspaper cutting I have mentions a David Cole of the Welsh Guards being one of those who rescued my dad from a German hospital. The newspaper cutting is a bit short of detail of course but I wonder if this David Cole was part of the abovementioned regiment.
    Jenny
     
  8. harkness

    harkness Well-Known Member

    23rd Hussars War Diary - March 30th:

    Leave at first light in reserve behind 3rd RTR. Route Heiden, 4459 - Velen, 4866 - Gescher 5073. Go into lead at Gescher directed on Holtwick, 5879. At midday "A" Squadron bump two infantry and Bazooka parties in the area of T roads 5578. H Company 8th RB helping, these are quickly dealt with. Turning north through Holtwick, "A" Squadron was again held up by Bazooka, A/Tank fire and slight artillery fire. 1/100,000 Sheet P1.

    After a combined attack "B" Squadron are passed through moving north through Legden, 5682 which has only been partly cleared by 2nd FF Yeomanry. Scattered Bazooka fire all along the main road. After being engaged by at least one S.P., One troop of "B" Squadron was held up by a position of three 88mm A/A, A/Tank guns at 5785 and, as it was getting dark, was unable to make further progress despite the assistance of 2 Troop which tried to to outflank from the right. In almost total darkness a Panther was knocked out by Lieut Cuddy's tank.

    The following abandoned equipment was found the next morning:- Three 88mm guns, one Panther, one Flakvierling, four half-tracks and six transports.

    5 x Other Ranks killed in action and six x Other Ranks wounded.
     
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  9. Monument

    Monument Member

    Excellent information. Many Thanks.

    Best regards
     
  10. Monument

    Monument Member

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